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EDITION 03 - INCENSE – woody and resinous and smoky

I was having coffee with a friend a week or so ago and we got on to the topic of Meghan Markle (we love her) and the Royals (we love them too) and just how much celebrity gossip/news there is in general (we don’t love it). “I mean, who cares if some Netflix star had a facelift, or if they’ve been to rehab eight times or if they’ve starved themselves for a role or what sex toys Gwyneth Paltrow sells on goop?” she said.

We chewed on that for a while, then moved on to talk about books, films and new recipes we’ve discovered, then we said our goodbyes and promised to meet up for coffee again soon.

Later, at home, I found myself grazing the goop website. C’mon…you’d do the same. Goop (usually written as ‘goop’) is the lifestyle brand launched by Paltrow in September 2008 out of her kitchen. It’s her take on beauty, food, travel, style, wellness and work and has new age advice on topics “earthing”. I quickly realized that a lot of what I saw on goop wasn’t for me, except for a Moroccan turkey meatball recipe and this: Edition 03 – Incense EdP. It turns out Paltrow is a fan of fragrance.

“I am such a fragrance girl,” Paltrow said in an interview. “I love [fragrance] so much, and I think it’s so transportive and powerful and it can take you back in time, it can take you forward in time to dreams of your life, and I just think it’s amazing.” Hmmm. I think I’m beginning to like her.

But how does someone reconcile a love for the ‘all-natural’ with a love for perfume, which is, well, let’s face it, not exactly ‘healthy’?
Paltrow managed do it by teaming up with organic perfumer Douglas Little, founder of Heretic Parfums and nose behind my beloved Dirty Ginger, to create four all-natural, luxe perfumes for goop. Edition 03 – Incense, launched in 2016, is the third fragrance in the series, which is based on the seasons.

It opens with the heady scent of green frankincense from Oman. The green colour gives the resin fresh aspects of lime and menthol, making the opening airy and woody and deep. It’s the smell of mysticism and spirituality and the backdrop to what comes next. Juniper tiptoes forward, herbaceous and camphoraceous, it heightens the freshness of the green resin. Spicy, earthy, black pepper is the perfect foil for the juniper. But this isn’t the only yin-yang pairing. There’s aromatic cardamom, sweet and spicy, with a woody, balsamic undertone that’s bolstered by cedar. It feels good to fill my lungs with it. Labdanum lurks here too, rich and complex.

But this story is all about incense and there’s plenty of it wafting throughout the fragrance making Edition 03 – Incense a smoky, resinous siren call. I cannot get enough of that green frankincense.Every time I catch a whiff of it, I am impressed with the balancing act Douglas Little has pulled off. The notes don’t disappear into each other nor do they fight each other, rather they gently tug and tussle while keeping their own identity. Masterful.

They next time we meet up for coffee, I’ll have something to report on goop, a decant of Edition 03 – Incense and a Moroccan turkey meatball recipe to share with my friend. I’m looking forward to it already.

Edition 03 – Incense is listed in our Decant Store. Decants are $6.00 for 1 ml.

Image - Wikimedia Commons - Incense Burner - Seoul, Korea, National Museum